U.S. Olympic Alpine skiing team closer to complete after last qualifying races

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Three more U.S. Alpine skiers clinched Olympic spots on the final day of qualifying races on Sunday, leaving discretionary selections to fill out the roster.

River RadamusLuke Winters and Keely Cashman are all headed to their first Olympics. They join the previously qualified Mikaela ShiffrinBreezy JohnsonPaula MoltzanNina O’BrienJacqueline Wiles and Bella Wright and Travis GanongBryce Bennett and Ryan Cochran-Siegle.

MORE: U.S. athletes qualified for 2022 Winter Olympics

Radamus, 23, will likely be the youngest man on the team. He is the highest-ranked American man in giant slalom, ranking ninth in the world. His birthday is the day before the Olympic giant slalom.

Radamus, who won five golds between the 2016 Youth Olympics and 2019 World Junior Championships, succeeds the retired Ted Ligety as the U.S. medal hope in the event.

Winters, 24, made it as the top U.S. male slalom skier, ranked 24th in the world going into Sunday. On Jan. 9, he finished 10th in a World Cup slalom in Adelboden, Switzerland, marking the best finish for a U.S. man in the event in nearly six years.

Cashman, 22, qualified as the third U.S. woman in super-G, behind Shiffrin and Johnson.

The U.S. currently has quota spots for six men and nine women, which, according to Olympedia.org, would be its smallest Olympic Alpine skiing team since 1984, the last Winter Games before the super-G was added. It could gain more spots later this month in reallocation.

As things stand, U.S. Ski and Snowboard can go three different directions for its last men’s spot.

It could give it to three-time Olympian Steven Nyman based on its objective criteria. Nyman is ranked third among Americans in the super-G and wins the tiebreaker over its third-ranked GS skier, Brian McLaughlin, by one World Cup point in their respective disciplines.

It could go the discretionary route by choosing a skier not already on the team for the super combined.

It could go the petition route, choosing a skier who missed competition due to injury such as Tommy Ford or Jared Goldberg, should either submit a petition by 7 p.m. ET on Sunday.

The U.S. filled all of its objective women’s spots with its top three skiers in downhill, super-G, giant slalom and slalom and top two in the combined. For its final two discretionary spots, it could choose its fourth-ranked skiers in giant slalom (A.J. Hurt) and slalom (Katie Hensien).

A third spot may open up. Wright, who qualified as the second-ranked American woman in the combined, has not skied since breaking a bone in her right ankle in a Dec. 12 race crash. The U.S. does not have a third woman with combined points, so the spot would become a discretionary selection.

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Novak Djokovic breaks record he shared with Rafael Nadal at French Open

Novak Djokovic French Open

Novak Djokovic broke a tie with rival Rafael Nadal by reaching the French Open quarterfinals for the record 17th time, never truly in trouble during a 6-3, 6-2, 6-2 victory over Juan Pablo Varillas on Sunday.

Djokovic is closing on bettering Nadal in a more prestigious category: Grand Slam singles championships. Both currently sit at 22. For Djokovic, that total includes two at Roland Garros, in 2016 and 2021, and he can become the first man to own at least three trophies from each major tournament.

Nadal is a 14-time champion in Paris but is missing this time because of a hip injury; he had arthroscopic surgery Friday night.

Against the 94th-ranked Varillas, who had never won a Slam match until this event and then took three in a row in five sets, Djokovic was, not surprisingly, at his dominant best at Court Philippe Chatrier on a warm, sunny day.

The 36-year-old from Serbia finished with more than twice as many winners, 35-15, and fewer unforced errors. He went 15 for 17 on trips to the net. He put in 80% of his first serves. He converted 6 of 12 break points while dropping his serve only once.

All in all, a no-drama showing in under two hours from Djokovic, who hasn’t ceded a set yet through four matches. He’s had his less-than-amiable back-and-forths with some spectators over the past week in Paris, but when this one ended, Djokovic gestured as though to hug everyone as he heard some chants of his two-syllable nickname, “No-le!”

In his 55th career major quarterfinal — Roger Federer, who retired with 58, is the only man to reach more — and 14th in a row at Roland Garros, the No. 3-seeded Djokovic will face No. 11 Karen Khachanov on Tuesday.

Khachanov, who is 1-8 against Djokovic, made it this far at a Slam for the fifth time by defeating Lorenzo Sonego 1-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7), 6-1.

The other men’s fourth-round matches Sunday were No. 1 Carlos Alcaraz vs. No. 17 Lorenzo Musetti, and No. 5 Stefanos Tsitsipas vs. Sebastian Ofner.

Two unseeded women moved into quarterfinals and will play each other next: Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, the 2021 runner-up at Roland Garros, and Karolina Muchova.

Pavlyuchenkova, who missed last year’s tournament as part of a lengthy absence with a knee injury, got past a third consecutive seeded opponent, No. 28 Elise Mertens, by a 3-6, 7-6 (3), 6-3 score.

Muchova was a 6-4, 6-4 winner against Elina Avanesyan, who lost in qualifying but got into the main draw when another player withdrew.

The other women’s matches scheduled for later: No. 2 Aryna Sabalenka vs. 2017 U.S. Open champion Sloane Stephens, and No. 9 Daria Kasatkina vs. Elina Svitolina.

FRENCH OPEN DRAWS: Women | Men | Broadcast Schedule

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French Open doubles team disqualified after tennis ball hits ball girl

2023 French Open

French Open doubles player Miyu Kato and her partner were forced to forfeit a match when Kato accidentally hit a ball girl in the neck with a ball after a point on Sunday.

In the second set on Court 14 at Roland Garros, Kato took a swing with her racket and the ball flew toward the ball kid, who was not looking in the player’s direction while heading off the court.

At first, chair umpire Alexandre Juge only issued a warning to Kato. But after tournament referee Remy Azemar and Grand Slam supervisor Wayne McEwen went to Court 14 to look into what happened, Kato and her partner, Aldila Sutjiadi of Indonesia, were disqualified.

That made Marie Bouzkova of the Czech Republic and Sara Sorribes Tormo of Spain the winners of the match.

“It’s just a bad situation for everyone,” Bouzkova said. “But it’s kind of something that, I guess, is taken by the rules, as it is, even though it’s very unfortunate for them. … At the end of the day, it was the referee’s decision.”

Bouzkova said she did not see the ball hit the ball girl, but “she was crying for like 15 minutes.”

She said one of the officials said the ball “has to do some kind of harm to the person affected” and that “at first, (Juge) didn’t see that.”

Bouzkova said she and Sorribes Tormo told Juge “to look into it more and ask our opponents what they think happened.”

During Coco Gauff’s 6-7 (5), 6-1, 6-1 singles victory over Mirra Andreeva on Saturday, Andreev swatted a ball into the Court Suzanne Lenglen stands after dropping a point in the first set. Andreev was given a warning by the chair umpire for unsportsmanlike conduct but no further penalty.

“I heard about that. Didn’t see it,” Bouzkova said. “I guess it just depends on the circumstances and the given situation as it happens. … It is difficult, for sure.

In the quarterfinals, Bouzkova and Sorribes Tormo will face Ellen Perez of Australia and Nicole Melichar-Martinez of the United States.

FRENCH OPEN DRAWS: Women | Men | Broadcast Schedule

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